The art of performing, seven tales in twenty-four hours

The Art of Making a Play

Theater productions aren’t made in a day, unless you’re at Southeastern.
But not just one production was made. Seven short fairy tales were twisted into one large production for the 24-Hour Theatre Festival entitled “7 Twisted Tales: Made in a Day.”
The process began the night before, when the character selection and actor pictures had been sent out to writers across the country for the plays to be created. Once the plays had been written, actors began memorizing and practicing lines to come up with ideas and characters of their own.
“We got here at 7:00 a.m. and we found out everything,” said Dani DeMontluzin, a senior majoring in English. “We read over our stuff a couple of times and it just gets really hectic because as actors, we always push ourselves. Just a lot of line running and laughing at ourselves and how dumb we are and it was just a lot of fun.”
From lines to makeup, everything was planned out prior to the 8:00 p.m. show time. Even the set from “Murderous Innocent” was taken down during the time span after its last showing on Friday.
“It’s such a whirlwind,” said Jim Winter, director for the event. “Even though it’s one of my babies, I let these guys roll with it. This is our third one in a year and I wanted them to take ownership.”

Quiet on the set!

Imagine a place where good triumphs, wrongs are righted and happily ever afters always happen.
But when did Halloween ever have any of these things? Each of the seven twisted plays once roamed in this realm of positivity, but fell into despair when rewritten for the 24-Hour Theatre Festival.
From Hansel and Gretel to The Three Little Pigs, each play was repurposed to fit a more terrifying or humorous aspect of each story.
“It’s very stressful at first, but in the end it’s really fun,” said mass communications senior Byron Robinson. “I really love acting, so it was really enjoyable to do. It’s a great experience when you get on stage and rock it.”
Robinson played as Reverend Jo Mama at the funeral of Snow White. Characters from Snow White’s past each told of their experiences, and jealousies, of Snow White, but learned to love her in the end.
DeMontluzin played Gretel and her interpretation of her character came more from the friendship of Matthew Carona, who played Hansel.
“It was just interesting to put yourself in that position of just going after what you want,” said DeMontluzin. “You’re going to push the witch in the fire and do what’s not supposed to happen, but get what you got to get.”

And that’s a wrap

Though each play was its own contained story, you could get a sense that each play was using the original work, keeping its intended meaning, but putting a darker twist on the visual production.
And as the production ended, the cast and crew bowed to the crowd’s applause, some knew this would be their last production.
“I’m graduating in December, so it was really nice to have this be my last play,” said DeMontluzin. “It was so cool because I’ve gotten so close to so many of the people in our theater organization, and they’re all new. We’re outside, and I was like ‘This is my last show’ and they were like ‘This is my first,’ so there was this weird moment that we had because you know that it’s going to be in good hands when you leave.”
Even in the play’s waning moments, Winter made an unexpected cameo as the conscience for one of the narrators of the play. Other actors were not aware of his character’s intentions, which gave the play a suspenseful ending.
“It’s always stressful,” said Winter, “it can’t not be. But this is such a great bunch. They showcased what I love about this program. They’re good people, and they look out for each other. At the end of the day, it was like ‘Let’s get out there and have fun.'”